May is Celiac Awareness Month. If you have celiac disease or have a gluten sensitivity, shopping for gluten free foods can be very confusing and frustrating at first. Gluten free foods can also be expensive, and if you aren’t sure how they taste, you may not want to spend the money. Did you know your supermarket may have resources you didn’t know about that can help you? I enlisted the help supermarket nutrition experts who at the front lines on what gluten free foods are on the shelves. Her are some of their favorites.
1. Quinoa and Chia
Leah McGrath, RD, with Ingles Markets based in North Carolina, encourages customers to try quinoa or chia. Quinoa has become a popular gluten free grain. Often called “the mother grain”, quinoa is a powerhouse of nutrition. It is higher in protein and has larger amounts of Calcium, Magnesium, Vitamin E, Zinc, and Potassium than other grains. It can be used as a cereal, in salads, or as a flour. Chia may be new to many consumers. At 10 grams of fiber per tablespoon, this tiny seed packs a nutritional punch. They are also rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. Chia can be used on dishes or soaked to make a pudding.
2. Udi’s Gluten Free Breads and Diamond Nut Thins
Finding crackers and breads can be challenging for gluten free consumers. Jen Haugen, a dietitian with Hy-Vee in Minnesota, recommends products like Blue Diamond Nut Thins or Udi’s Gluten Free Bread lines for customers looking for substitutions for bread or crackers.
3. Corn Tortillas
Cindy Silver, corporate nutritionist for Lowes Foods, doesn’t want customers to feel like they are missing out. She suggests swaps like 100% corn tortillas versus flour tortillas. She cautions corn tortillas still contain wheat so it’s important to read the ingredient labels. You can also make your own with Cindy’s easy and delicious recipe, Corn Tortilla Bake.
4. Goodbye Gluten Free Bread
April Graff, a supermarket dietitian with Hy-Vee, suggests Goodbye Gluten Free Bread to her customers, and she also keeps Blue Diamond Gluten Free Artisan Nut Thins at her desk when she needs a quick snack.
5. KIND snack bars
When Karen Buch, corporate dietitian for Weis Markets, is need of a gluten free snack, she reaches for a KIND bars. KIND’s tasty bars are filled with dried fruit, nuts, and other ingredients you can pronounce (as their tag line states and proves true). Their Gluten Free granola worth checking out.
Do you have a favorite gluten free food find? Share in the comments.